When Squire’s co-founders Songe LaRon and Dave Salvant first started their barbershop tech platform in 2016, they went all in. The two purchased a barbershop in New York City’s Chelsea neighborhood and figured out in person just how the business worked. For a year, the co-founders dedicated all their efforts to the shop. Now a larger barbershop chain owns the business, handling every bit of the business but the cutting of hair.
Just five years later, LaRon and Salvant believe that this experience was a critical point in the history of their enterprise. Squire now has 175 employees and a tech platform used by over 2,000 shops across three continents.
The company raised a Series C in December and tripled its valuation. Squire announced again that the barbershop company has raised a $60 million round led by Tiger Global, an investment firm that deploys capital globally in both public and private markets.
Squire has again tripled its valuation. After enjoying a massive 300% year-over-year revenue growth, the New York startup has a value of $750 million. Just over a year ago, its value equaled $75 million.
About Squire, the Barbershop
Squire is an all-in-one platform to help take control of barbershop operations with a single, easy-to-use platform. The program boasts Virtual Waiting Rooms and provides customers with real-time notifications when they can get served, so there’s no need to wait in person.
Squire Not Seeking Capital
Similar to a lot of startups today, Squire wasn’t searching for capital when Tiger Global offered to lead its next financing. The investment firm took part in Squire’s Series B and C rounds.
However, Squire has only spent 10% of its previous round, a $45 million equity round, and now it has tens of millions more in the bank. Their decision to add more capital will allow the startup to more aggressively expand in the United Kingdom and Canada. That’s despite the presence of early-stage barbershop competitors like Boulevard. Squire’s cash savings allows LaRon and Salvant to enjoy a position where it can acquire companies, a strategy that Salvant says will be “aggressive”.
Squire has also announced the official launch of a product that has been in the pipeline since the company’s inception. Squire Capital is a money management platform with tools tailored to the needs of barbershop operations, including instant payments. Squire’s core business has been centered more around appointments, loyalty programs, and the installment of contactless payment. Now, a fintech layer will allow the startup to offer a more niche service than current financial services titans like Square or PayPal.
The Barbershop: Natural Next Frontier
Fintech is a “natural next frontier” for Squire, Salvant remarked. That’s because his startup already has some deep insights into how its businesses operate and how they process sales. At this point, Squire would like to add another service so it can offer a more holistic experience.
Squire Capital was built with Bond, a venture-backed fintech infrastructure startup that looks to help enterprise operations launch their own banking products. After trying a $15 million debt financing arm around the time of its Series C, Squire is not ready to provide loans, but they hope to develop a better way to scale offerings in the future.
A Rare Black-Led Unicorn
Squire is quickly becoming a historical and unfortunately still uncommon Black-led unicorn. Salvant commented on the significance of that achievement, saying that this was “the optimal outcome” when founding the barbershop company. He hopes that VCs and investors will start to invest more in Black founders with Squire as strong evidence of success.
“Let’s face it, we’re not typical founders, we don’t look the same and we don’t act the same,” Salvant said. “I just want to serve as a lighthouse and this is validation for myself, my co-founder, but more importantly, what’s coming after us.”